Lydiate (and everywhere else) – The quest for speed and how it impacts on our lives

Southport Road, Lydiate

This is a matter I have oft thought about and not necessarily in the way you might think.

Yes, we all see the mad drivers blasting through our communities at a rate of knots neither aware or caring about the potential consequences of their actions. Indeed, in my own community of Lydiate there are growing concerns from Joe and Jane Public about irresponsible speeding along Southport Road and Moss Lane and I’m quite sure others can add to these two roads.

To his credit local Labour Parish Councillor Neil Spencer is trying to get the powers that be (Sefton Council and Merseyside Police) to address this problem and I’m with him all the way. I’ve previously tried to get Moss Lane’s speeding addressed and the rural part of it was reduced to 40mph a few years back. And my Parish Council colleague Edie Pope campaigned for the speed restriction to be reduced to 40mph along the section of Southport Road where it becomes Mairscough Lane because it’s a notorious accident black spot near the junction with Church Lane. But, and its a big but, bringing in lower speed restrictions does not stop the mad drivers who want to blast along at 50, 60 or even 70mph as they don’t really care. So good luck to Neil, let’s have another go at trying to make Lydiate’s roads safer.

Edie Pope outside her Southport Road farm shop. The notorious accident black spot is in the background.

But to me this speeding problem is probably far more deeply seated in our way of life than we may realise. Everything has to be quick, immediate and now. Our working lives are all about doing things faster to save costs and boost productivity. We leave too shorter time to get from one place to another, probably because we are either too optimistic about how long a journey will take or because everything we do is at 90mph so to speak. In turn all this causes much stress an anxiety so should we really be surprised if it produces more and more racing car drivers on our streets? Just a thought……..

Edie Pope’s scarecrow traffic cop from 2019, which was meant to make drivers think about their speed.

Lydiate – Southport Road/Mairscough Lane – Too many road accidents

My good friend Cllr. Edie Pope campaigned to get the speed limit reduced to 40mph along the section of Southport Road that leads out of Lydiate and into West Lancashire some time ago. At the Church Lane junction by St. Thomas’ Church the road name changes to Mairscough Lane and it noticeably narrows to a blind bend. Sadly, the road traffic accidents have kept piling up.

Lydiate Parish Councillor Edie Pope outside her farm shop on Lydiate's Southport Road. The blind narrow bend is in the background.

Lydiate |Parish Councillor Edie Pope outside her farm shop on Lydiate’s Southport Road. The blind narrow bend is in the background.

Frankly the road is too narrow especially where large vehicles are concerned and there have been a lot of very serious accidents and some loss of life in recent years. It was for this reason that Edie fought for the speed limit to be reduced.

I really think that Sefton and Lancashire Councils need to radically re-think how they can better manage the speeding problems that are often behind the accidents.

The temptation to speed is created by the clear wide carriageways that lead into this tight narrow section of road and frankly the nutters are never going to slow down unless they are forced to do so.

So Edie, who lives on the section of road and has seen far too many accidents, and I are calling upon Sefton Council and Lancashire County Council to make radical plans to try to stop the accidents. We have written to them both urging them to work together to find a sustainable solution as soon as possible. Bigger warning signs simply will not work, that’s been tried before.

We must stop people being seriously injured and indeed killed at this accident black spot.